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functional food

Make good use of foods and herbs that are rich in natural antioxidants and immune-enhancers which work synergistically to protect you.

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Quinoa - Powerhouse For Health

Quinoa - Powerhouse For Health

In our world where grains of every kind—gluten-free or not—turn to sugar when you eat them, quinoa is a fabulous superfood you should make part of your diet. With its high fiber content and good quality protein, plus a wide variety of powerful health-giving compounds—from polyphenols, saponins and phytosterols to free radical scavengers—it’s not only yummy, but a great meat-free food to grace your table. It has very little carb content compared to all those stodgy grains and is far lower on the dangerous glycemic index. SUPER NUTRIENTS Although it’s spelled “kwin-OH-a” you pronounce quinoa’s name as “KEEN-wa”. It has been a staple of South American diets for an amazing 4000 years. But not until 50 years ago did curious scientists start to investigate the nature of this food and discover that it comes as close as any other in the plant kingdom to supplying a vast array of the essential nutrients we humans need to thrive. This seed is high in magnesium to calm the body and reduce blood pressure. It brings you an abundance of good quality fiber when you eat it. Quinoa also contains a lot of anti-inflammatory compounds. It is safe to eat even if you have delicate digestion, inflammatory bowel trouble, celiac disease or gluten intolerance. And it’s brimming with important minerals and vitamins from magnesium, zinc and phosphorous to vitamin E, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6 and folate. This makes quinoa an excellent choice for people savvy enough to go for foods that are low on the glycemic index, low-carb dieters, vegans, and all of us who need to increase our fiber intake. THE NEW FUNCTIONAL FOOD Studies continue to report that eating quinoa brings us all sorts of health-promoting effects. It can help reduce high blood pressure, alleviate cardiovascular troubles, promote cellular energy production and act as a pre-biotic. Thanks to its high level of bio-active compounds, many also believe this unique natural food has the potential to help lower the risk of cancer, diabetes, and heart conditions. At the University of Milan, researchers discovered it also satisfies your appetite far better than, say, wheat or rice. It promotes a sense of fullness, helping to alleviate your desire for more food and helping to halt weight gain. The seeds of quinoa can also help reduce most of the negative effects that come from fructose on your lipid profile and glucose level. To discover what this wonderful non-grain can do for you, you need to know how to prepare and use it in your life. After all, the proof of any pudding is in the eating. And there is an art to preparing it. HERE’S HOW Make sure the quinoa you buy is fresh and organic. Most of the stuff in supermarkets is neither, so shop in good, reliable organic food stores. Read labels carefully to check for both before you buy. Stale quinoa is dusty and can taste “dead” since it has lost so much of its goodness through food processing or just sitting on shelves for too long. Rinse it well Do not be tempted to skip this direction. You must wash away the thin coating on these tiny seeds, otherwise they will taste bitter. You will need a very fine-meshed strainer so that the little seeds don’t slip through it in the process. Hold it under streaming water for two minutes while swirling around its contents. Time to Cook To 1 cup of your rinsed seeds add two cups of water, a pinch or two of sea salt or Himalayan salt, then bring to a boil. Reduce the heat as much as possible and let it simmer until it becomes tender. This usually takes about 15 minutes. You’ll be able to tell when it is cooked because the tiny grains will have become translucent and the germ of each seed will show up as a little spiral on its surface. You do not want to overcook it as this will make it mushy. Drain it Remove from heat and drain it using the same fine-mesh strainer. Then put the drained quinoa back in the pot, cover it and let it sit without any heat for another 15 minutes. This helps dry it a bit so it does not become clumpy. Time to serve Aerate it with a fork. It should look light and feel fluffy, and you should begin to see the way the germ is separating from the seed itself. Its texture is very much like that of rice or couscous. Serve immediately You can eat it as a porridge with a handsome glob of butter on top, add it to a casserole, a curry, or the way you might serve rice on a plate with other vegetables. MORE FABULOUS FAUX GRAINS Quinoa is but one of the amazing “false” grains which have none of the negative effects of grains and cereals. You can make all sorts of wonderful things using them, from muffins and pancakes to loaves and pilaf. Learn more about all of these by clicking here, and enjoy! Do let me know how you get on, and if you discover any of your own wonderful recipes using this gem of a faux grain, so we can share them with other people in the future.

A Passion For Herbs

A Passion For Herbs

For more than a million years we humans have lived with herbs. We’ve cooked with them, healed with them, scented our homesand sanctified our prayers with them. On a molecular level, our body recognizes a herb when we take it. Unlike taking a chemical or drug, our body responds to herbs as though they are old friends. When you get to know the nature of a specific plant it enhances your life immeasurably. You can come to know a herb the way a woman knows her lover. When the spirit of a plant meets the spirit of a human you can expect magic. Thanks both to traditional practices and recent scientific discoveries, we now know that certain plants can work wonders for the human body. The classic definition of a herb is a non-woody plant which dies down to its roots each winter. This definition is far too limiting. It was probably made up by 19th Century European botanists who had never seen the rainforest in which, of course, there is no winter to die back in. Neither had they ever heard of woody trees and shrubs such as hawthorn, ginko and elder which are some of the best selling herbs on the market these days. I define a herb as a medicinal plant. It can come from any climate and be a leaf, a bark, a flower or a root. It can be home-grown or wild, a weed, a spice, a plant, which is used for its healing or culinary or beautifying properties. Here are a few simple herbs that can be fun and fruitful to explore: ALOE HEALS The cool, slippery gel oozed out of a leaf of the aloe cactus has been used for almost 3000 years to treat burns and cuts and to undo the devastating effects of too much exposure to the sun. Recent studies show that phyto substances from the aloe actually penetrate damaged tissue encouraging healing and increasing blood flow while easing inflammation and pain. GINSENG STRENGTHENS The Ancient Chinese said so. They spent a fortune on this strange looking man-root. They still do. Thousands of years ago ginseng was taken in order to extend life, to sharpen sexual functioning, to bring clarity to the brain and energy to the body. Russian and German scientists have carried out lengthy studies into the effects of ginseng on humans and animals and concluded that it does indeed sharpen the brain and shorten reaction time. It also improves concentration and helps protect you from damage caused by exposure to long-term stress. GARLIC PROTECTS The ancient Greeks—including Pliny as far back as the first century AD—insisted that this smelly plant banishes worms and coughs. By now there have been more than 2,500 studies confirming its anti-microbial properties and its usefulness in warding off flu and colds not to mention its ability to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels which are too high, and to help clear yeast infections. COMFREY KNITS Its very name comes from the Latin conferta which means ‘grow together’. In 400BC the Greek physician Dioscorides praised comfrey for its ability to stop heavy bleeding and clear bronchial infections. Science confirms that comfrey is rich in the healing compound allantoin which enhances tissue growth and cell multiplication. That is why you so often find it added to ointments and face creams. GINGER SOOTHES A core remedy in the Chinese pharmacopoeia for nausea and gentle cleansing, the deliciously hot ginger plant has been used for more than 1500 years by wise women healers in Europe for tummy upsets. Many scientific studies confirm that it helps travel sickness. Some even show it helps morning sickness in pregnancy—in part because it has the ability to calm excess acid in the stomach and improve digestion. FEVERFEW BANISHES Eccentric English herbalist Nicholas Culpeper was always singing the praises of this cheerful daisy-like plant with its lacy leaves. It was, he claimed, ‘effectual for all pains in the head.’ Recent studies carried out in Britain and elsewhere confirm that he knew what he was talking about. Feverfew can reduce both the frequency and the intensity of migraine. Once you discover the power of herbs it is easy to become so enthusiastic about them you go overboard trying to use them for everything. It is not wise to take lots of different plants all at the same time. Or you might start to think that since a small amount of something is good for you, taking twice or three times that amount will be even better. It isn’t. If you want safe and sane herbal help here are a few guidelines to follow: Herbs occasionally interact with conventional drugs. Be sure to tell your doctor that you intend to try a herbal remedy. If you want to use herbs to treat a serious medical condition, find yourself a good medical herbalist to work with. Don’t do it yourself. Take no more than recommended dosages of a herb or combination. If you notice any adverse reaction, stop right away. Use only the very best herbs whether they be fresh, dried, teas, tinctures, extracts, or capsules. Give plants enough time to work. Many herbs, such as St John’s Wort and Wild Yam, are slow to build beneficial effects on the body. Look to six weeks for results.

Xylitol—Good Or Bad?

Xylitol—Good Or Bad?

I have had recently had a lot of questions about Xylitol, So I have decided to post some information that has come largely from one of my favorite sources which is the Western Price Foundation. Hope you find it helpful. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol, a low-calorie carbohydrate made from birch bark, fibrous vegetables and fruit. Xylitol has no known toxic levels and was approved by the FDA in 1963. Some diarrhea or slight cramping may occur at first if a large amount is consumed all at once. It is recommended that one start small and let the body's enzymes adjust, which they will do. Xylitol is deadly to dogs even in small amounts. Gums, candies, baked goods, and table scraps containing xylitol must be kept far away from, and inaccessible to dogs, including ladies' and children's purses, and the garbage for dogs who are foragers. Xylitol had been known to the world of organic chemistry since it was first manufactured in 1891 by a German chemist. A natural, intermediate product, xylitol regularly occurs in the glucose metabolism of animals as well as in the metabolism of several plants and micro-organisms. Xylitol is even produced naturally in OUR bodies, up to 15 grams daily during normal metabolism. Because it metabolizes without using insulin, there is no blood sugar spike. Xylitol's Dubious Health Claims Since xylitol is an industrial product, it pays to be dubious about the industry’s health claims for it. First among these is the claim that xylitol prevents cavities. Indeed, many studies can be cited to support such a claim. But not all. The results of a recent two-year trial found no difference in cavities between those who chewed xylitol-containing gum and those who did not. 2. In an earlier study, researchers concluded that “Overall, consumption of xylitol-containing snacks and candy did not reduce S. mutans levels.” 3.As for the claim that xylitol is good for diabetics, the fact that this sweetener is not completely absorbed comes at a cost: bloating, diarrhea and flatulence. In a study performed on 18 diabetic children who consumed a dose of 30 grams of xylitol per day, researchers found a significant elevation of the uric acid concentration.4 And since 80 percent of xylitol is metabolized through the liver, a danger to liver function similar to that of fructose is a distinct possibility. The Public Relations Story The official website for xylitol, xylitol.org, states, “In the amounts needed to prevent tooth decay (less than 15 grams per day), xylitol is safe for everyone.” Fifteen grams of xylitol is about 0.5 ounces. What about doses over 15 grams? In a long term toxicology study on rats researchers found that xylitol caused a significant increase in the incidence of adrenal medullary hyperplasia in male and female rats in all dose levels tested (5%, 10% and 20%).5 That means it caused abnormal cell growth in the adrenal glands. In one higher-dose study in which mice consumed 20 percent of their diet as xylitol, there was a significant increase in the mortality of the males as compared to those consuming sucrose.6 A major study in dogs found an increase in liver weight associated with xylitol use.7 Conclusions About Xylitol Xylitol’s own promotional material says it is not safe for everyone to use. Since children are smaller and less developed than adults, they will obviously be much more sensitive to xylitol’s effects. There are no safety data or tests to indicate a safe dosage for children. And foods containing xylitol may also contain additional sweeteners that are undeniably harmful, such as aspartame. As for claims that xylitol can prevent tooth decay, I can only say, “Buyer beware!” Such claims are based on the faulty theory that bacteria cause tooth decay. We know from the work of Weston Price that tooth decay is a problem of nutrient deficiencies—the bacteria are just there cleaning up dead tissue. Finally, and most importantly, this industrial product is just not necessary. Nature has provided us with many wholesome sweeteners that can be used in moderation without adverse effects in the context of a diet of nutrient-dense traditional foods. Natural Stevia... the real thing is a better choice: Spoonable Stevia By Stevita: Spoonable Stevia by Stevita uses only stevia extract with at least 95% pure glycosides (extremely sweet tasting ingredients of the Stevia herb leaves), and a little erythritol, a crystal granulated naturally produced filler found in fruits, vegetables and grains. It is best for baking and sprinkling. Order Spoonable Stevia By Stevita from iherb ENGLISH TOFFEE STEVIA: Wisdom Natural, SweetLeaf, Liquid Stevia, English Toffee Sweet Leaf liquid stevia with all natural flavors is convenient and easy to use. As a supplement, add this nutritious stevia to water, tea, coffee, milk, sparkling water, protein shakes, plain yogurt or anything else you can imagine. It comes in many different flavors including lemon but English Toffee flavor is the best by far. Order English Toffee Stevia from iherb ORDERING FROM IHERB.COM: If you decide to order any products from Iherb.com, you will automatically receive $5 or $10 off your first order. Their products are the cheapest and best in the world…I use them for everything no matter where I am. Get it sent to you via DHL. It will be with you in three to four working days… iHerb.com ship all over the world very cheaply. IMPORTANT - Do not be fooled by the artificially made Stevia products such as Truvia and Purevia. These products are not the natural Stevia plant. To learn more read my post here called beware of Truvia. Some research if you want to look at it Dehmel KH and others. Absorption of xylitol. Int. Symp on metabolism, physiololgy and clinical use of pentoses and pentitols. Hakone, Japan, 1967, 177-181, Ed. Horecker. Int J Paediatr Dent. 2008 May;18(3):170-7. J Am Dental Assoc, 2002;133(4):435-441. Förster, H., Boecker, S. and Walther, A. (1977) Verwendung von Xylitals Zuckeraustauschstoff bei diabetischen Kindern, Fortschr. Med.,95, nr. 2, 99-102. Russfield, A.D. (1981) Two-year feeding study of xylitol, sorbitol and sucrose in Charles River (UK) rats: Adrenal Medulla. Unpublished report. World Health Organization, Summary Of Toxicological Data Of Certain Food Additives and Contaminants, WHO Food Additives Series NO. 13 Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives* Rome, 3-12 April 1978 accessed at: http://www.inchem.org/documents/jecfa/jecmono/v13je11.htm. Heywood, R. et al. (1981) Revised report: Xylitol toxicity study in the beagle dog (Report of Huntingdon Research Centre).

Oil Pulling - Ancient Healing From The Coconut

Oil Pulling - Ancient Healing From The Coconut

Many years before Ayurvedic medicine arrived in the West, I made a journey to hospitals throughout India to learn all I could about this ancient healing tradition. I was bowled over by all the marvelous things I did discovered. When I arrived at the Ayurvedic Hospital in Kerala—land of the coconuts, I found thousands of acres, interspersed with twisting waterways lined with organic coconut trees. Doctor’s there taught me how inexpensive organic coconut oil can heal your whole body using a technique which is called “oil pulling.” I am excited about sharing this with you. Oil Pulling There are literally thousands of types of bacteria in your mouth, including Streptococcus mutans—an acid-producing bacterium that is a major cause of tooth decay. During oil pulling, coconut oil produces acids which breakdown these toxic pathogens. When you take coconut oil into your body through oil pulling, your system converts one important ingredient, lauric acid, into monolaurin, which has antibacterial, antiviral and antiprotozoal properties. In truth, coconut oil contains the largest amount of lauric acid of any fruit or vegetable on the planet. Monolaurin is a monoglyceride with the ability to destroy negative invaders in the body that have a lipid coating. The lipid-coated viruses and bacteria that it attacks include the HIV virus and the influenza virus as well as a number of other pathogenic bacteria and protozoa. Another ingredient in coconut oil, capric acid, also boasts antimicrobial properties. Finally, coconut oil is about 66% medium chain triglycerides or MCTs. These offer a huge variety of health benefits, including sating your appetite. Powerful Detoxifier The oil pulling technique has been used for some 5000 years, not only because it reduces plaque in the mouth, but as a means of healing conditions throughout the whole body—from inflammation, pain in the joints, chronic fatigue, sinusitis, back pain and diabetes, to migraine, PMS, and chronic skin problems. Oil pulling is powerfully detoxifying to the body as a whole. The mouth is home to billions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other parasites and other toxins which undermine health and can trigger disease. It is these beasties and their toxic waste products that create gum disease and tooth decay. They are then passed on to the rest of the body. The immune system is constantly fighting off these pathogens. When we become overloaded from excessive stress, poor diet, or environmental toxins, they leak into the whole system and can create secondary infections, as well as a wide variety of other health issues. Pathogenic oral bacteria, and the toxins that they produce, harm far more than just your mouth. They circulate through the bloodstream and are carried all over the body. reduce plaque by at least 50% Coconut oil is highly responsive to temperature changes. In a cool room it goes solid. But set it in the sunlight or immerse a jar of it in hot water for a few minutes and it will turn into a crystal clear liquid oil. Oil pulling is believed to reduce plaque by at least 50%. It involves rinsing your mouth with coconut oil, much the way you would use a mouthwash. Even in its solid form the coconut oil will quickly change into a white liquid as it responds to the heat of the mouth. So how do you do oil pilling? You’ll need a container of organic raw coconut oil that is natural and has not had any fragrance taken out of it. Put a teaspoon to a tablespoon of oil in your mouth. It will probably be in its solid state. But it will melt as soon as you get it in your mouth. Swish the oil around in your mouth for around 10 to 15 minutes. Then spit it out completely. Finally, brush your teeth. This is best done twice a day after which you brush your teeth. You must never swallow the oil. You see, by the time you’ve done your oil pulling exercise each time, the oil will have become loaded with bacteria, toxins and mucus. You must then spit it out. I did oil pulling for eight months, after which my teeth were whiter, my breath was fresh and my tongue and gums had a healthy pink color to them. I was so pleased that I figured “I probably don’t need to do oil pulling any more”. So I stopped. After about three months, I realized that I was getting some slight swelling in my mouth. So I resumed oil pulling and have continued ever since. I actually enjoy it. So will you I predict.

Banish The Blues

Banish The Blues

Depression can be a killer. I know. I suffered from it badly in my early twenties. I suspect I was born with a genetic tendency towards it. I am familiar with the deep sadness, feelings of shame and helplessness, the terrible fatigue coupled with not being able to sleep to relieve it, the poor concentration and strange shifts in appetite. I have learned a lot about handling it over the years. There are many causes of depression—some are of the body, and some of the psyche. I don’t think you can separate the two. Just as body and mind feed each other in producing the dark, seemingly endless blues which can set in at any period of your life, the herbs you call on for help will improve both body and spirit. When you feel depressed, you can feel anxious as well. Many of the plants which are effective in lifting the blues help to clear fear and anxiety too. Cleanse Body And Soul Where you find depression, you almost always find a mass of creative energy which, for one reason or another, has remained blocked. This can make you feel impotent and helpless. You also often find a tendency to live life by other people’s rules rather than your own—from the depths of your own soul. Indeed, if depression is deep and debilitating enough, you may even come to feel you have no soul to live from. Deep-cleansing the body is important in releasing blocked creative energy and restoring the biochemical balance that helps wash away the blues. Use the Herbal Cleanse. Take a look at my brand new 10 Day Clean-Up Plan book, just published on Amazon. When your cleansing program is done, try following a long-term way of eating based on fresh vegetables—many of them raw—and good quality proteins from fish, organic meat, free range chicken and eggs. Avoid milk products including milk itself, yoghurt, and cheese (butter is OK because it is a fat, and it is the milk protein that tends to cause problems for people prone to depression). Also cut out wheat and anything made from flour such as pasta, breakfast cereals, breads and biscuits and, finally, make highly processed convenience foods a thing of the past. It was just such a diet—one in which at least 50-75% of the foods I ate were raw—that began to lift my own deep depression in my twenties. Sacred Plants Then, turn your attention to herbs and discover just how useful they can be to rebalance brain chemistry, strengthen the body and clear the mind. Then call on the healing powers of some of the best plant-based antidepressants you can find, from St John’s Wort, rosemary and California poppy, to the gorgeous ginkgo. Ginkgo Clears Cobwebs The beautiful leaves from ginkgo biloba—also known as the Maidenhair tree—improve circulation throughout the body and brain. Ginkgo’s seeds were sent to Europe in the 1720s from Japan and China. The Chinese use the ginkgo seeds, but research in the West has mostly concentrated on the leaves. They contain ginkgolides, unknown in any other plant. These phytochemicals block blood platelet activating factors. In doing so, they inhibit all sorts of allergic responses. Meanwhile, ginkgo’s flavonoids do wonders to improve circulation to the brain. Recent studies show that this long-standing Oriental gift can help people clear depression. Ginkgo increases the rate at which information is transmitted at the level of nerve cells. This helps depression in many, thanks to the plant’s ability to enhance the flow of neurotransmitters in the brain. An effective antidepressant dose in one study where ginkgo was used to specifically counter depression was 240 milligrams of the powdered herb a day, in capsule form. It can take six to eight weeks to experience the full effects of ginkgo. So be patient. California Bright Lights Its watery sap has long been used by Native Americans to relieve toothache. It relieves pain, relaxes spasms and warms your body. California poppy is the best anxiety-calming herb I know and it works quickly—in a few hours. Don’t worry, it is not a narcotic, only a gentle sedative and tranquillizer so safe that herbalists give it to children. Neither does it depress the central nervous system as many sedatives do. The usual dose of tincture is 1 teaspoon to half a glass of water taken twice a day in the afternoon and evening. I like to combine tincture of golden California poppy, Eschscholzia californica, with that of St John’s Wort—in equal parts—to lift the blues. Bright As Sunlight The yellow flowers and dancing leaves of St John’s Wort—Hypericum perforatum—can bring balance and joy. This plant may be slow to act, but its effects are deep and long lasting. St John’s Wort is nature’s answer to Prozac. Every part of this joyous herb yields uplifting power—its leaves, its shoots, its glorious yellow flowers. Even the way it grows seems to celebrate life. St John’s Wort can banish anxiety, bring light into the dark depths of depression, and help transform difficult times—the loss of a job, of a lover, or of sense of purpose—into times of power. In the past 20 years, dozens of randomized clinical trials have shown that this plant is just as, if not more, effective than standard antidepressant drugs. Yet it comes without the negative side effects. In Germany alone, 1 million prescriptions are written for this plant each year. The bright yellow flowers of St John’s Wort contain a red oil called hypericin, which is anti-viral and probably mood enhancing. Many studies show that it is whole plant extracts, however, rather than hypericin alone that have the best antidepressant effects. Help From St John's Wort To make tea, use 1 teaspoon of the dried herb in a cup of boiling water. Steep for 10-15 minutes, strain, and drink 1 to 3 times a day. Another effective way to use St John’s Wort for depression is as a tincture. When you feel at your lowest you don’t have to go to the trouble of making a tea. Take 1 teaspoon of St John’s Wort tincture in a little water 3 times a day. When used as an antidepressant it should be taken for at least a month before results can be seen. A lucky few people, however, respond right away. Caution: In a few people St John’s Wort causes mild nausea, stomach-ache, depressed appetite, tiredness, and in even fewer still, sensitivity to sunlight. It shouldn’t be taken during pregnancy. If you are already taking antidepressant drugs do not stop taking your medication without consulting your doctor. Lift Your Spirit Tea Rosmarinus officinalis grows just about everywhere. Who would ever suspect that the rosemary plant is one of the most useful herbs you will ever find for lifting the blues. The strong and sturdy plant is an excellent tonic as well as an all-round stimulant. It raises spirits and energizes the body, clearing apathy, nervous exhaustion and digestive disturbances. Rosemary has a long-standing reputation for strengthening the memory as well. That’s why Greek scholars wore garlands of rosemary when taking exams. It is also rejuvenating, in no small part thanks to the flavonoid diosmin which it boasts in abundance, to strengthen capillaries and collagen in the skin. In the 14th century, 72 year-old Izabella, Queen of Hungary, was crippled with rheumatism. She used masses of Hungary Water (rosemary leaves macerated in alcohol) and regained her youth so well that the king of Poland proposed to her. One of the first to be distilled, a few drops of essential oil of rosemary in the bath can help clear a fuzzy head with ease. You can use the fresh leaves or the essential oil in steam inhalations for exhaustion and shattered nerves. Meanwhile, simple rosemary tea is bracing and wonderfully uplifting. Spirit Lifting Tea Put a handful of rosemary leaves (1 tablespoon of the fresh herb or 1 teaspoon of the dried herb per cup) into a warmed pot and pour boiling water over them. Replace the lid to prevent the aromatic vapors from being wasted. Leave to brew for five minutes. Drink hot. Top quality herb products: Gaia Herbs, Kava Kava Root Liquid Herbal Extract Validated Full Spectrum Extract Dietary Supplement Supports Normal Relaxation from Tension Brought on by Daily Stress Promotes Muscular and Nerve Relaxation Encourages a Sense of Emotional Well Being Order Gaia Herbs, Kava Kava Root from iherb Natrol Ginkgo Biloba Helps Improve Memory Supports Sharpened Alertness Dietary Supplement Natrol Ginkgo Biloba may help support circulation, which is one way researchers believe this herb helps enhance cognitive function. Our formula is standardized to guarantee a potent level of highly active compounds. Order Natrol Ginkgo Biloba from iherb Gaia Herbs St. John's Wort Liquid Herbal Extract Validated Full Spectrum Extract Dietary Supplement Order Gaia Herbs St. John's Wort from iherb Herb Pharm, California Poppy We prepare our California Poppy Extract from fresh (undried) whole Eschscholzia californica plants (root, leaf & flower) which are Certified Organically Grown on our own farm without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. To assure optimal extraction of bioactive compounds, the plants are hand-harvested while in full flower and are then taken directly to our laboratory and promptly extracted while still fresh and succulent. Our poppy plants are never fumigated or irradiated. Order Herb Pharm, California Poppy from iherb

Marvelous Motherwort

Marvelous Motherwort

Motherwort—Leonurus cardiaca—is also called Lion's Tail or Yi Mu Cao in the Chinese Pharmacopoeia. It grows in waste places. Motherwort is the most comforting herb I have ever come across. It brings a sense of inner security and calm strength that is unequalled by anything, except perhaps for a love affair of the deepest order—maybe not even that. This wonderful herb has gained its name from the ancient practice of using it to reduce anxiety during pregnancy. The plant has good sedative properties which have been well validated by scientific experiments. It is able to calm the nervous system while at the same time acting as a tonic to the body as a whole. Culpepper, who believed that motherwort belonged to the goddess Venus and to the astrological sign of Leo, wrote "There is no better herb to drive melancholy vapors from the heart, to strengthen it and make the mind cheerful, blithe and merry." I think this sums up the virtues of motherwort superbly. SUCH BLESSINGS Its leaves are full of mind-altering natural chemicals, which studies in China have shown to decrease the levels of blood lipids and exert a regulating action on muscles such as the womb and the heart, bringing calm in its wake. This is one of the reasons why, in addition to being used by women to ease hot flushes, banish insomnia, and even restore elasticity to the walls of the vagina, it is an excellent herb for the treatment of many heart conditions in men. It is the most physically and psychologically comforting plant I know. Motherwort is rich in alkaloids and bitter as an infusion. It is easier to take as a tincture or made into a herbal vinegar. Take 10 to 25 drops of the tincture made from the fresh plant every 2 to 6 hours, or 1 to 2 teaspoons of the herb vinegar as desired. WHAT IT CAN DO Calm The Nerves There is something so calming and balancing about motherwort that it is hard to describe to someone who has never used it; used frequently it can relieve anxiety, nourish the nervous system, and relax tensions, while at the same time act as a tonic for energy; it is wonderful used just before confronting stressors of any kind. Minimize Hot Flushes This herb can reduce the intensity, length and frequency of hot flushes, even helping to calm the dizziness or faintness that can accompany them, thanks to its ability to oxygenate the blood in men and women, tonify thyroid, liver, heart and womb, and invigorate circulation all round. For best results use it regularly for 12 weeks or longer. Sometimes 10 to 15 drops or so of the tincture in a little spring water can ease a hot flush while it’s happening. Promote Undisturbed Sleep It’s a great help when you awaken in the night with sweats and have trouble dropping off again. Take 10 to 20 drops of the tincture (kept at the side of your bed with a glass of spring water) and swallow some each time you wake up. It even helps banish anxiety and bad dreams. Eliminate Water Retention Taking a little motherwort every few hours and it acts as a natural diuretic, reducing water retention; this is useful after a flight when legs and feet can become swollen. Tone and elasticize womb and vagina Improving circulation and thickening tissues which have lost their elasticity and tone, the herb can rejuvenate the tissues of the bladder, womb and vagina when you take it a couple of times a day for 2 to 4 weeks. Relieve cramps Simply the best for clearing up menstrual and uterine cramps, when the menstrual flow is absent or light to moderate. Use 5 to 10 drops of the tincture in a little water every few minutes until they have gone and repeat as necessary. Prolonged use strengthens the muscles of the womb, and makes it resistant to cramping in the future. Strengthen Self Esteem My favorite plant for calming emotional ups and downs is motherwort. 10 to 20 drops of tincture of motherwort works wonders when you are feeling unsettled. Alternatively you can take 5 to 15 drops of the tincture every day for a month or two to stabilize emotions long-term. It is also strengthening to the heart and tends to enhance courage and self-esteem. IMPORTANT CAUTION: Motherwort is not a herb to use when a woman is experiencing menstrual flooding since it can aggravate this tendency.

Herbal Help

Herbal Help

Valerian: This is the root of the plant Valeriana officinalis, which was the primary herbal sedative used on both sides of the Atlantic before the advent of barbiturate sleeping pills. It is a safe and well tested herbal remedy with a smell like dirty old socks (the smell drives some people's cats wild). Don't let that put you off, since Valerian is a powerful and useful tool for inducing safe sleep - more potent than most of the other natural tranquilizers such as hops or skullcap or chamomile. You can take Valerian in a couple of ways, but I like the tincture best - 10 to 20 drops before bedtime in a little water, or in the middle of the night when you awaken. Alternatively you can use a couple of capsules of the dried root. Valerian in lower doses is also useful when your nerves feel 'shot' during the day. Very occasionally Valerian will be too strong for a particular woman, so that she awakens with a little sense of hangover in the morning. If so, you can either cut down on the dose or try another milder remedy. In any case, it can be a good idea to change remedies every so often so your body doesn't become accustomed to one, rendering it ineffectual. Passion Flower: Passiflora incarnata, also known as Maypops, is a climbing plant that boasts magnificent white flowers with a purple center. It has a wonderful sedative and mildly narcotic effect on the body. Passion Flower is most useful for women who wrestle frequently with nervous tension and particularly helpful when nerves seem to be edgy before and around the time of menopause, when hormones can fluctuate wildly. It is also useful for relieving pain, thanks to its mild analgesic and antispasmodic qualities - all of which has been well demonstrated in laboratory and clinical tests. Passion Flower can also be useful for a woman troubled with premenstrual tension. It is not as strong as Valerian in its actions, is more calming than sedating, and as such is a great alternative to tranquilizer drugs. Use 10 to 20 drops of the tincture or the same amount of the liquid extract in water. Alternatively take two capsules of the dried extract up to four times a day as needed. Where a woman might take Valerian at night just before bed, the best results from Passion Flower often come from taking it 2 to 4 times a day to calm nerves and make everything easier and less stressful. Chamomile Tea: Matricaria chamomilla. One of the nine herbs sacred to the Anglo Saxon god Wotan, chamomile was also much loved by the Romans. Its name Matricaria is derived either from the Latin word 'mater', meaning mother, or from 'matrix', meaning womb. It has for thousands of years been used as a woman's herb against painful menstruation, to calm anxiety and aid sleep - even to help build strong bones, since it contains a form of readily absorbed calcium. Chamomile is also a uterine tonic - something else that has been scientifically evaluated. It boasts many other therapeutic properties as well such as being antibacterial in its actions and good for skin. The easiest way to take chamomile is in the form of a tisane or tea by infusing 5 to 10 grams of the dried flowers in hot water before bed or whenever you need relaxation. Chamomile works particularly well when taken together with Passion Flower. Hops: Humulus lupulus. The flowers from this British herb are often used together with other remedies to treat everything from indigestion to calm nerves. Like Valerian, hops has a pronounced sedative effect, but is milder. Unlike Valerian, hops smells sweet, and can be used without concern for side-effects. You can use hops in the form of a tincture but by far the best way for sleep - particularly good for women who are awakened in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep - is to drink hop tea, which you make before going to bed by steeping the flowers for ten minutes in hot water then straining and allowing to cool. Sit the tea - sweetened with honey if you like - by the side of your bed, so you can drink it when you awaken in the night. Also wonderful is a little pillow stuffed with dried hops blossoms, which you put under your neck when you go to bed, or if you awaken. Oatstraw: Avena sativa. The straw from oats has an ability to restore energy when nerves have been frayed, and for counteracting insomnia. It can help ease night sweats, calm anxiety, and even relieve headache. Again, stuff a little pillow with oat hulls or infuse them in hot water as with hops, and keep beside your bed through the night in case you need it.

Get High On Life

Get High On Life

In my mid-twenties, while searching for my own healing, I was blessed with friendship from some of the world’s finest physicians. These were men and women who had turned away from what they had been taught in medical school: Namely, that people need to be treated with drugs. They worked differently. They taught me that the power of healing always comes from within, thanks to the healing powers of Nature. These special physicians spent many days showing me how to prepare delicious, life-enhancing organic salads and juices, amongst hundreds of other things. I remain infinitely grateful for all they taught me. It changed my life. I keep getting requests from you all to write about some of the things I know, and how anyone can apply them to their own life. So let me begin with raw, organic juicing. LIFE IS THE SECRET Drinking raw juice is far more than the latest craze to hit a public grasping for its next quick fix. The dynamic lift, clean refreshment and sustained energy you get from drinking fresh juice is not an indulgence. And how to make and use these juices correctly is still one of life’s best kept secrets. As you begin to incorporate freshly-extracted, organic, raw vegetable and fruit juices into your life, wonderful changes begin to occur. At first you’ll notice the lift that just one glass of fresh juice can give you, especially if you drink it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. Your head clears. Your abdomen tightens. Your finger tips tingle. A few weeks down the road, you are likely to discover more energy, sharper thoughts, greater concentration, even a different outlook on your life. If you’ve never experienced a juice high, it’s time to buy a juicer, and get started. What’s the secret behind all this? Life is the secret—the most profound mystery in the universe. Raw organic foods and juices are bursting with life force. They are the perfect fuel for the body—easily assimilated and supplying a full range of essential minerals, nutrients and the power of living plants. That's all there is to it. REGENERATION AND RENEWAL Fresh fruit and vegetables are excellent foods. Most of our energy is derived from the food we eat. But the body has to break down and digest most foods before we can derive nutritional benefit from them. By extracting the juices of fruits and vegetables, you provide the body with an excellent source of nutrition that is virtually pre-digested, so it can be absorbed into the system in a matter of minutes—with a minimum expenditure of our own energy. There is nothing in raw juice that your body cannot make use of and, therefore, nothing that it need work hard to expel. Instead, the body can concentrate on getting rid of old waste. Raw juice helps the body detoxify itself, restoring its chemical balance. It creates an ideal environment for physical regeneration. However, it must be said that raw juicing will not bestow its blessings on you if you are still eating the standard western diet of convenience foods full of grain-based carbs and sugar. (Download my free book Healthy and Lean for Life from the home page of www.curaromana.com to learn about the best way to eat.) WHEN YOU NEED HELP What fascinates me is the way specific combinations of fruits and vegetable juices have specific therapeutic properties to offer help with common issues that we struggle with—from hair loss and insomnia to depression and prostrate trouble. Let me share with you a few juice recipes designed to help some common challenges. CLEAR FATIGUE One of the underlying causes of fatigue, particularly in women, can be iron depletion. Spinach juice is a far better way of boosting iron levels than taking tablets, which tend to be constipating and are poorly absorbed. The iron in natural foods and juices, including all our green leafy vegetables as well as in poultry, liver and molasses, is highly bio-available. This means your body has no trouble making use of it. Remember that replenishing the body’s essential nutrients takes time, so be prepared to work with organic foods and juices for several weeks before you start to see lasting results. Magnesium is another important mineral when it comes to fatigue. Low intracellular magnesium makes the body very prone to infection, food allergies and chronic illness. Good sources of magnesium are dark green vegetables, seaweeds, molasses, fish and organic raw nuts. DANDELION PLUS 4 or 5 carrots A handful of dandelion leaves 1 bulb fennel Juice as usual, then squeeze a tablespoon of lemon juice to the mixture. GREEN ZINGER 2 leaves kale or beetroot tops or a handful of spinach 4 or 5 carrots A small handful of parsley HI MAG 4-5 carrots 2 florets of broccoli 2 leaves dandelion, beetroot tops, spinach or kale Juice and season with a twist of lemon and a pinch of salt. HANGOVERS There is an art to hangover management. The key to it is looking at detoxification as the other side of the intoxication coin. All drugs provoke a strongly acidic reaction in the body, which causes the symptoms of a hangover, and the first step to recovery is to correct the body's chemical imbalance. Plain old carrot and apple juice is effective for re-balancing, and it's easy to take when you're feeling weak. By incorporating beetroot juice, you will greatly assist the repair of any possible damage done to your liver and kidneys. The inevitable consequence of over-indulgence is waking up dehydrated and nauseous, with a brain that feels like it’s banging against the side of your head each time you move. You need to replenish bodily fluids, nourish exhausted muscles and get your head together. Fruit juice is strongly indicated. Citrus juices, being full of natural sugar vitamin C, are an immediately effective remedy, but they may be a bit harsh if your stomach is delicate. Watermelon, being exceptionally mild, is an ideal substitute if you happen to have some. APPLES & PEARS Apples and pears are closely related. They make a sublime combination when juiced together. 2 pears 2 whole apples Juice as usual and drink straight away as this juice oxidizes very quickly. VIRGIN MARY A Bloody Mary without the vodka, the flavor of this refreshing tomato-based cocktail benefits from a few drops of Tabasco. (Add a clove of garlic and it becomes a Vampire Mary; a fresh jalapeno or other hot green chili pepper turns it into a Scary Mary.) 2 ripe tomatoes 2 carrots 1/2 a beetroot 1 stalk celery 1 cucumber BERRY MELON Berries combine well with melons. The array of flavors gives lots of scope for experimentation. Try Cantelope & Raspberry, Honeydew & Blackberry or the classic Watermelon & Strawberry: 1 slice of watermelon, 3cm wide and cut into chunks to fit your juicer 6 strawberries, washed and with their green stalks removed (In hot weather, a good tip is to freeze your berries before juicing them.) HAIR LOSS You may have been genetically programmed to lose hair, but that doesn't mean it has to happen. There’s a great deal you can do to prevent hair loss, to slow it down dramatically, and in many cases to stop it altogether. Eat foods that are rich in the sulfur amino acids, L-methionine and L-cysteine. Eggs are a wonderful source so devour them with enthusiasm. When it comes to protection from hair loss, cabbage is a real help too. You must also cut out the foods that work against you stopping and eliminating hair loss. Sugar in any form is a killer. Stop eating it altogether. Use a good tasting real stevia in its place. So are the grains and cereals—breads, biscuits and pasta. Eat foods rich in PABA, inositol and choline, such as organic liver, spinach, grapefruit, and raw nuts. Consider adding vacuum-packed flax seeds to your diet. You can grind them in a coffee grinder and sprinkle them on salads or soups. You can also add them to your juices. Finally, the alfalfa has long been believed to stimulate hair growth, particularly in its sprouted form. ALFALFA—FATHER OF ALL JUICES The word alfalfa means ‘father of all grains’ and when it comes to hair health you can't do better than alfalfa sprouts and carrot juice. 4-5 carrots 1 cup alfalfa sprouts Optional: chopped parsley Juice as usual, top with some chopped parsley and drink. GINGER’S BEST cantaloupe melon ¼ inch slice root ginger 1 lime (peel, leaving pith) PARSNIP PERFECT Parsnips, also known as anemic carrots, are well known for their ability to strengthen hair, skin and nails and can protect against hair loss. 2 parsnips 3 carrots 1 beetroot Ease yourself gently into raw juicing. If the juices you make don’t taste sweet enough to you at the beginning, add a good quality stevia to taste. There are a lot of so-called “natural” stevia products which are gross distortions of the natural stevia. I have found that they give a lot of trouble to many people. Avoid them like the plague. (Aaron please put check out my video on this issue and give the link to it here) When it comes to the very best stevias (it feels like I have tried them all), below are the crème de la crème. BEST LIQUID STEVIA Wisdom Natural, SweetLeaf, Liquid Stevia, English Toffee Sweet Leaf liquid stevia with all natural flavors is convenient and easy to use. As a supplement, add this nutritious stevia to water, tea, coffee, milk, sparkling water, protein shakes, plain yogurt or anything else you can imagine. It comes in many different flavors including lemon but English Toffee flavor is the best by far. Order Liquid Stevia from iherb BEST GRANULATED STEVIA Spoonable Stevia by Stevita uses only stevia extract with at least 95% pure glycosides (extremely sweet tasting ingredients of the Stevia herb leaves), and a little erythritol, a crystal granulated naturally produced filler found in fruits, vegetables and grains. It is best for baking and sprinkling Order Stevita from iherb

Apple Detox

Apple Detox

A time to be luxuriously lazy and self-indulgent, to enjoy the process of getting rid of all those wastes you really don’t want hanging around in your system making you look and feel low. A two day apple fast designed to be done over a weekend; it’s not even a fast, for you can eat as much as you like – but only apples. For two days all you have to do is to eat apples, and nothing but apples. Your body will do the rest. The reason the apple fast is done over a weekend is that the process of elimination can use up a lot of energy, so it’s a good idea to do it over two days when you are not working. The apple fast was taught to me thirty years ago by Dr Gordon Latto, a British medical doctor who used nothing but food and breathing techniques and a few herbs to heal even the most complex and chronic conditions. Eating as much as you want – but only apples – in place of your regular meals, and in between too if you like, for two days cleans your body, helps clear away food sensitivities, and banishes the ravages of unnatural appetite. A few days on apples once in a while can eliminate retained water, revive flagging energy, make your skin look wonderful and your eyes shine. No pregnant or breast-feeding woman should do an apple fast: neither should anyone with a kidney, liver or heart complaint, for in such cases any sudden change of diet carries with it potential dangers to health. But if you are generally well, a short apple fast is a great way to clear away the cobwebs. Check with your doctor first if you have any doubts. making apple history It was the apple which first led Swiss physician Max Bircher-Benner to develop his system of treatment based on living foods. Bircher-Benner was himself ill with a liver ailment, which made it virtually impossible for him to digest anything. One day, as he lay in his bed unable to rise or eat, his wife slipped a piece of fresh raw apple between his teeth. He tasted it, and to his surprise he found he could tolerate it. Several days – and many raw apples – later he found himself well again. He never forgot the humble apple or what it could do to detoxify the body and to help restore normal functioning to digestion, cells and the circulation. He used apples regularly in his dietary treatments of obesity and other illnesses. In fact, they formed the basis of his Bircher Muesli, which has become world famous. The apple has long been known as a health tonic, medicine, cosmetic and bowel-regulator all wrapped up in one skin. When eaten, it stimulates the secretion of digestive juices. It contains natural substances that help prevent digestive and liver troubles. Where unsweetened apple juice is the traditional drink among country people, there tends to be no incidence of kidney stones. The simple apple is traditionally used for eliminating obesity, as well as being a folk treatment for skin problems, bladder inflammation, anemia, insomnia, intestinal parasites and bad breath. an apple a day The adage ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ is not just an old wives’ tale. The apple is quite rightly known as the queen of fruits. In its natural whole state, it supplies valuable fruit sugar and vitamins in a superb balance to ensure that your body can efficiently digest and use them. The apple is our richest fruit source of vitamin E and also provides a good supply of biotin and folic acid – two B-complex vitamins important in preserving energy, emotional balance and in keeping your digestive system clean and functioning well. It is also a fine source of vitamins A and C, which are both natural antioxidants – powerful anti-agers – not to mention more than a dozen minerals including sulfur, potassium, iodine, silica, magnesium and calcium, and even essential amino acids in small quantities. Apples are low in acidity to help balance stored bodily wastes which tend to be acidic. They stimulate the flow of saliva in the mouth, and clear away debris from the teeth. Eating a raw fresh apple stimulates circulation in the gums too. Finally, apples are rich in a very special form of soluble fiber called pectin which helps to clear out the dangerous heavy metals such as lead and aluminum that we all pick up from our city air, food and water. Heavy metals in your body are something you want to get rid of. These elements, the concentration of which has increased dramatically in our air, foods and water since the Industrial Revolution, can seriously interfere with your body’s metabolic functioning. Mercury tends to suppress the levels of white blood cells in the immune system. Cadmium displaces the essential element zinc needed for a great many of your body’s enzyme systems, and renders them inefficient and even inactive. In the West we now have a concentration of lead in our bodies some 500-1000 times that of our pre-industrial ancestors. High levels of this heavy metal age us prematurely, interfere with our mental processes, suppress immunity and contribute to depression. Aluminum, another heavy metal, detrimentally affects the central nervous system. The presence of all these elements in excessive quantities (and their concentrations in the human body appear to be increasing with each passing decade) generally interferes with your body’s metabolic processes. The ability of apples to remove heavy metals from your system is one of the best reasons for doing an apple fast, particularly if you live in a city. fantastic fiber The fiber that apples contain really is remarkable. In addition to cellulose (the most common kind of fiber, which binds water and increases fecal bulk), the apple is also rich in pectin – a very special kind of fiber with quite exceptional detoxification properties. So different in texture and character is pectin from other forms of fiber that it is sometimes surprising to think that they are classified in the same group. Unlike cellulose, pectin does not bind water, it is water-soluble. It has no influence on fecal bulking, but it appears to be an excellent substance for lowering cholesterol. It may also help eliminate bile acids from the intestines, thus short-circuiting the development of colon cancer and gallstones. It is also useful as a natural chelating (binding) agent which is why it is so good at mopping up unwanted heavy metals, such as aluminum, from the tissues and eliminating them from the body. This can be very important when it comes to detoxification for weight loss. prepare to be clean Getyourself a big bag of the freshest apples you can find – perhaps three or four different kinds for variety. If you don’t like the look of your apples you won’t want to eat them, so be picky. Buy a box of apples if you like, your greengrocer might give you a discount. On this pre-cleanse day it is a good idea to get your system ready. Avoid tea, coffee, alcohol and soft drinks. Steer clear of bread and cooked carbohydrates such as pasta and cereals, and make your last meal of the day a large raw salad made of fresh fruits and vegetables. Don’t have anything else to eat after your salad, except perhaps a cup of herb tea before bed. This will give your body a good 12 hours head-start on the elimination process and it will thank you for it. the apple fast There’s really nothing to it. Over the two days you have chosen, tuck into your apples. Eat as many as you like at any time of the day or night. You must eat the whole apple including the peel, the seeds and the core. Chew well, until the last drop of flavor has been extracted from the fruit. The only part you throw away is the woody stem. Of course, you need to eat your apples raw. You can munch them whole, or grate them and sprinkle a little cinnamon on top. You can even put them in the blender with spring water to make a drink. Eat nothing else during this two-day period, but eat them whenever you are hungry. Do not drink tea or coffee. You may have herb teas such as peppermint, lemon balm or chamomile with a teaspoon of honey if you wish. Drink lots of spring water, but nothing else. Be lazy and luxurious.  During these days indulge yourself doing whatever is pleasurable for you. Many people find their sexuality is heightened during these days. If so, enjoy it. Apples are great to munch in bed. In many ways, the most useful thing about the apple fast is the way you can call on it when you most need help to get you back on the rails again. We all slip up sometimes - we over work or over indulge and live to regret it the next day. A two day apple fast, or even just a day spent eating only apples, is an excellent ‘quick corrector’. Spend even just one day munching apples and it will help set all to rights again, so that when you awaken next morning you feel more like your old self and ready to face the day full of energy. Apple fasting gives you the chance to step back regularly and take a look at your lifestyle, instead of mechanically going on day after day without being aware of where your energy is going. Set aside two days, three or four times a year – a weekend is best – for an apple fast. This will spring clean your body from the inside out. Even apple fasting for one day a week is a great boost to vitality and good looks, because it helps detoxify your body of wastes accumulated as a result of drinking or eating too much, or consuming the wrong kinds of foods. It can also help calm the ravages of an over-enthusiastic appetite, which many people suffer as a result of food sensitivities or over-stimulation of the digestive system. Furthermore, it is an excellent discipline: such a practice helps you break through ingrained habit patterns, which can make us largely unaware of how we are eating.

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Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana®

Fast, Healthy Weight Loss

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana® has proudly supported 12,000+ weight loss journeys over the past 12 years. With an overall average daily weight loss of 0.5 - 0.6 lb for women and 0.8 - 1.0 lb for men.

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 1st of June 2020 (updated every 12 hours)

-1.01 lb
for women
-1.23 lb
for men
-1.01 lb
for women
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for men

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 1st of June 2020 (updated every 12 hours)

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